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Archive for October, 2022

NieR: Automata Ver 1.1a – What We Know So Far

2B with a blindfold

“NieR: Automata’s” famed secret room is cool enough, but its finely crafted, layered story that evolves with each playthrough is what truly sets the game apart. The complex battle between alien machines and human-made battle robots has been getting rave reviews (via Metacritic) since it came out in 2017, and carved its name in the annals of gaming. The game combines awesome action with one of the more captivating storylines out there, so in this age of video game-inspired shows like Netflix’s “The Witcher” and HBO’s upcoming “The Last of Us” adaptation, it was perhaps just a matter of time before “NieR: Automata” would receive an anime adaptation.

The first hints of a “NieR: Automata” anime have been in the air since February 23, when a YouTube teaser announced a “NieR: Automata TV animation project.” Fortunately, the “NieR: Automata” faithful now have far more information about the upcoming anime adaptation by A-1 Pictures, which will be called “NieR: Automata Ver 1.1a.” Let’s take a look at what we know about the project so far.

Nolan North as Nathan Drake in the Uncharted series

Nolan North, Nathan Drake

Over twenty years ago, North started his run on the late-’90s/early-2000s soap opera Port Charles. It was right around that time he started to dabble in video game work, providing voices in Interstate ’82 and EverQuest II. His voice work in games continued, even as he kept showing up on various TV programs. While he was recording lines for games like Call of Duty 2 and Final Fantasy XII, he still managed to fit in appearances on Malcolm in the Middle, NCIS, and Modern Family.

His biggest role by far, though, has to be that of Nathan Drake in the Uncharted series. A video game.

In Uncharted, which has spanned four games over the course of nine years, North both provided the voice acting for Nathan Drake, as well as the motion capture work. In an interview with Tech Radar, North spoke about how similar acting in Uncharted was to his past work: “For a lot of games, you’re in a booth. You’re alone,” he said. “Uncharted is more like doing live action than it is doing any of the other games.”

And North, somehow, someway, has found more time to do it all. He recently wrapped up seven seasons of the TV series Pretty Little Liars. And he’ll soon play the part of Edward Richtofen in Call of Duty: Black Ops 4.

James McCaffery as Max Payne in Max Payne 3

James McCaffery, Max Payne

James McCaffery’s relationship with the Max Payne franchise is an interesting one. He’s always voiced the character, starting with the original Max Payne in 2001. And he’s done so despite the fact that the character model has changed three different times. Max was first based on Remedy co-founder Sam Lake, but for Max Payne 2, the team behind the game used actor Timothy Gibbs. Finally, in Max Payne 3, McCaffery was able to finally able to be the face as well as the voice.

And that’s not all he did. McCaffery worked with Rockstar Games to provide the motion capture work for Max, suiting up in the appropriate gear to act out scenes and — in some cases — perform many of the game’s stunts. According to Rockstar, he did not do any of the “Shootdodging” stunts — those were left to professional stuntmen. Otherwise, much of what you see Max doing in action-related sequences is actually James McCaffery’s movement, captured and recreated in the game.

So what’s McCaffery been up to since Max Payne 3? He appeared in a few episodes of TV’s Revenge, and also showed up in two episodes of the Netflix series Jessica Jones. And he’s acted in a few movies, as well, including Compliance and Blind.

But will we ever see him act as Max Payne again? The odds aren’t good. But there’s always a chance.

Ashly Burch as Aloy in Horizon: Zero Dawn

Ashly Burch, Aloy

Prior to becoming Aloy in Horizon: Zero Dawn, Burch had already made her mark in video games by playing Tiny Tina in Borderlands 2, as well as Chloe in Life is Strange. But what made her turn as Aloy so different was the massive scale of the role, and the game itself: it’s a 30-plus hour jaunt, and Burch was there to record every single line, every step of the way.

She took particular pride in making Aloy feel like a fully realized character.

“When we create female characters, I think often there is a tendency to kind of make female characters emotionally bulletproof,” Burch told Engadget in an interview. “You’ve heard people talk about the ‘capital-S Strong Female Character’ who’s sort of humorless and doesn’t really have a spark and is sort of flawless in their execution. They just don’t feel like fully fleshed out, real characters. And I really didn’t want Aloy to feel that way.”

Burch’s work in Horizon helped cement what would become an all-around great video game experience. And Burch hasn’t let up since then, either, helping write an episode of the cartoon Adventure Time that earned her an Emmy, and continuing to voice characters in games like Fortnite, Marvel vs. Capcom: Infinite, and Life is Strange: Before the Storm.

Based on the reception Horizon received, there’s a good chance we’ll see her as Aloy again in the future.

Stefanie Joosten as Quiet in Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain

Stefanie Joosten, Quiet

A few years ago, Stefanie Joosten was a Dutch girl who found herself fascinated with Japanese culture and gaming. So much so, in fact, that she studied Japanese at the University of Leiden and received her master’s degree in Tokyo. It was there that she was approached by a modeling agency that specialized in finding Western models, and it led to her becoming one of the most recognizable characters in Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain.

According to Joosten, she received a call one day about a video game audition. The name of the game was a secret, but once she arrived to try out and saw Hideo Kojima, she knew something was up.

She talked about the audition with Dutch newspaper Het Parool: “There was a crate with gun replicas. ‘Take one, and pretend like you’re infiltrating an army base,’ they said. Kind of awkward, because I had no idea how to hold this thing. Fortunately, I could draw inspiration from the games I play, the other girls didn’t have a clue at all.”

Since her appearance in The Phantom Pain, Joosten has worked on several films and television shows, as well as another game called ICEY.

Melina Juergens as Senua in Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice

Melina Juergens, Senua

Melina Juergens turned the gaming world on its ear with her stunning performance in Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice, so much so that she ended up taking home an award for it at the 2017 Game Awards. But even more surprising than her powerful portrayal of the game’s lead character, Senua, was the fact that Melina hadn’t had any acting experience prior to playing the part. In fact, she didn’t even audition for it. She worked with the Hellblade team at Ninja Theory as its video editor, and she only donned a motion capture helmet to help the studio test out some tech.

As soon as the team saw her in action, they knew they had the right woman for the role.

“I think there’s a lot of myself in Senua, because I’ve never acted before, and I don’t know how to act,” Juergens said in an interview with PCGamesN. “I basically just used method acting — I used experiences from my own life, like traumas or my anxiety, and connected that with the scenes from Hellblade.”

Juergens still works at Ninja Theory, though she says she’s now more comfortable with the idea of taking other acting jobs. And she’d love to follow up her performance as Senua if the opportunity presents itself.

Let’s hope it does.



If you’re someone who watches TV shows or movies on the regular, you likely have a favorite actor or actress. They’re responsible for bringing your favorite characters to life, and helping you become even more immersed in the universe that character resides in. And when they show up in something, you can’t miss it — because you know they’re going to knock it out of the park.

Video game actors and actresses can have that same effect.

What’s unfortunate, though, is that a lot of the people who voice — and even provide the motion work for — your favorite game characters aren’t as well known. They’re just as good at drawing you in and making you feel something for a character comprised of polygons and textures, but they don’t always find the spotlight the same way.

That ends today. For every Tom Hanks or Meryl Streep in Hollywood, there’s a Nolan North or Ashly Burch in video games working tirelessly to tell incredible stories. And it’s time you meet them.

These are some of gaming’s most well-known characters — and what the people who play them look like.

Valkyrae accidentally showed off her YouTube earnings

Valkyrae selfie with curly hair

While most big-name streamers had their earnings leaked on Twitch in 2021, YouTube streamers were mostly safe. However, Valkyrae didn’t hackers to reveal her income to the world — the YouTube streamer accidentally did it herself.

In one of her livestreams back in 2020, Valkyrae ended up clicking over to her YouTube analytics tab. This was captured by Twitter user TheLolHounds, who also pointed out several bits of information.

The page showed off a few interesting metrics, such as her video averages, but the section that stood out most was where it discussed her past 26 days of activity. With 2.6 million subscribers, 36.4 million views, and 8.4 million hours being watched, the YouTube megastar made $172k. Not only that, but it was down by 6% — a $10k difference. And keep in mind, she still had five days to go (and earn) in the month.

Loserfruit intentionally leaked her phone number, and she didn’t regret it

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Not all personal info leaks are accidental. Sometimes a streamer intentionally gives away their contact information just to see what happens.

As a joke, Loserfruit decided to use her phone number as her Fortnite username. Her idea could have easily backfired, and the joke would then have been on her. However, Loserfruit lucked out and had a fairly good experience.

Most of the people who called Loserfruit wished her luck, even though they seemed to have butterflies in their stomachs while talking to her. The number of people who called exceeded her capacity to respond, and most were just sent to the eternal limbo that is voicemail. In fact, so many fans called Loserfruit her phone glitched out and started hanging up on people.

In a surprise twist, though, one person who called Loserfruit teamed up with her for a Fortnite match, which was actually a boon for him since he didn’t have a microphone. If he hadn’t reached Loserfruit, he wouldn’t have been able to communicate with the rest of the team.

Overall, Loserfruit’s streaming plan was relatively troll-free. One person did call her to order some Big Macs, though.

Loserfruit deactivated the phone number after the stream, so people who missed the once-in-a-lifetime chance to talk to her might not ever get it again. Still, even though Loserfruit’s idea didn’t come back to bite her, it was the epitome of the phrase, “Don’t try this at home, kids. I’m a trained professional.”

Streamers That Leaked Personal Info Live On Stream

streamer, leak, personal information, stream

Streaming is a lucrative — if risky — method of content creation. On one hand, it removes all the nitty gritty of editing since it is essentially a live broadcast of a game session. On the other hand, it opens up streamers to the dark truth of the internet: Your mistakes are on display for everyone to see, and they’ve been laminated. If you say something on stream people find offensives, you can’t edit that out. And, if you accidentally leak personal information, you could potentially destroy someone’s else’s livelihood, or maybe your own.

Most streamers keep such information a closely-guarded secret. On the rare occasions streamers do leak personal information, they might get lucky and only receive simple phone calls from fans who want to wish them luck. But the odds are more than good that disgruntled audience members will use that info for nefarious purposes. That’s why most streamers are very careful with their sensitive data. The internet can be an unforgiving wasteland, and as you’ll soon discover, there are plenty of trolls lurking about.

Here are a few examples of streamers who’ve accidentally shared things they shouldn’t have online.

Pokimane’s info was leaked twice
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Imane Anys, better known as Pokimane, makes a lot of bank streaming. She might live the life we all dream by playing video games (specifically Fortnite and League of Legends) for a job, but like everyone else, her life can turn upside down when her personal info is leaked. Take for example, that one time her credit card information was stolen.

Most of us have been there. You’re out on the town, minding your own business when your credit card is denied. Then, when you get home, you discover someone tried to use your card to purchase 50 pounds of Cheez Whiz. Something like that happened to Pokimane when her credit card was accidentally caught on stream by fellow creator Fedmyster, who was wearing a chest camera. Pokimane recovered from this disastrous event quickly thanks to fast-acting card customer service. However, this wasn’t her only brush with personal info leaks.

Imagine, if you will, playing Call of Duty: Warzone for the first time and celebrating the momentous occasion with a livestream. Before you start, however, you grab a bottle of water — a hydrated streamer is an alert streamer, after all. But when you come back, you realize the stream was displaying your personal email for the past minute for everyone to see. Pokimane lived through this exact scenario, and while not as dangerous as accidentally sharing credit card information, it is embarrassing nonetheless.